‘Even in the most challenging of times, the creative industries has put itself at the heart of helping the next generation learn about the myriad skills that are needed to help the sector operate. We need them to help us rebuild our sector post-Covid, making us stronger, fairer and even more impactful than before.’
Jane Ide, Creative & Cultural Skills CEO
Some of the leading figures and companies from across the creative industries have come together in support of this year’s Discover! Creative Careers Week, an online programme aimed at introducing students to different careers and workplaces across sectors including screen, theatre, music, animation, VFX, publishing, museums and more. Companies involved include Ubisoft, Pinewood Studios, National Trust, Royal Opera House, Framestore, Leeds Museums and Galleries, Cockpit Arts, Dr Martens and Kycker.
Taking place from 1 – 5 March as part of National Careers Week, Discover! Creative Careers Week is an online programme funded by Arts Council England, that aims to introduce over 60,000 secondary school students to an exciting array of careers and workplaces across the creative industries. Using the DiscoverCreative.Careers website, schools and colleges will have access to a series of filmed interviews, tours and live panel discussions that will introduce students to a wide range of roles and career options.
‘It’s more important than ever to support and nurture the next generation of creative talent, whose lives have been turned upside down this past year. We want young people of all backgrounds to feel excited by the prospect of a creative career. This year’s Discover! Creative Careers Week will help develop new pathways into the creative industries. The innovative digital programme will connect thousands of students with inspiring figures and employers, highlighting the wide range of skills needed to help the sector recover from Covid-19 and the varied opportunities that exist across the creative industries.’
Darren Henley, CEO, Arts Council England
During the week there will be six live Q&A panels with representatives from across the creative industries discussing their career journeys and taking questions from students watching online. Panellists during the week include Annie Warburton, CEO of Cockpit Arts; Leigh Adams, Director of Education and Skills at the British Film Institute; Gareth Ellis Unwin, Oscar-winning producer of The King’s Speech; Rick Gibson, CEO at British Games Institute; Louise Smith, the sustainability manager from the new Bond film; Jim Lunt, Musical Director at Wakefield Theatre Royal and Rebecca Huggan, Director of The New Bridge Project.
‘When I got into the furniture industry, I didn’t realise how un-diverse it was. I didn’t see many people looking like me… but it didn’t put me off, whenever I enter a place or room where there aren’t many black people, I always think to myself that I’m the first one there, I have to show people that if I could do it – a single parent, dyslexic boy from Hackney, anybody could do it’ TV Presenter, Modern Furniture Restorer, Upcycler and Eco Designer Jay Blades on his experience of working in the creative industries
As part of Discover! Creative Careers Week there will be daily ‘Zoom the Professional’ workshops dedicated to introducing students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) to careers in museums and galleries, led by Leeds Museums and Galleries. There will also be a live Q&A panel for SEND students who will have the opportunity to hear from award-winning freelance graphic designer and entrepreneur who has spinal muscular atrophy and a character animator at Jellyfish Pictures who is neuro-divergent among others.
If you’re a school or college and you’d like to take part, please make sure you sign-up online. You can also download our guide to taking part in Discover! week here. Don’t worry if you’re unable to join in next week as you’ll still be able to access and use all of the resources from the DiscoverCreative.Careers afterwards.
You can also get involved and make some noise online! During the week we’ll be celebrating the lesser-known jobs within our sector and busting some myths about common misconceptions around creative careers. The ‘Proper Job’ campaign will feature short videos from figures tackling their chosen ‘myths’ around their roles and we’d love you to join in and contribute your own. You can also use Discover! week to promote your own online career resources. There are a number of simple ways you can join the campaign, download our campaign pack to find out more.
This 2021 digital edition of Discover! Creative Careers Week follows a hugely successful live event that took place in November 2019, in which hundreds of organisations from across the creative industries opened their doors to thousands of students and introduced them to the variety of roles and career pathways.
Discover! Creative Careers is an initiative by the UK creative industries to make it easier for young people to find careers in the creative industries and actively address the lack of diversity and inclusion across the sectors. Through a programme of online resources and events, it aims to show that careers in the creative industries are financially sustainable and have a comparatively low risk of automation There are currently more than 77,000 vacant positions. However, 90% of positions are currently filled by people from more advantaged socio-economic groups.
Discover! Creative Careers is led by Creative & Cultural Skills, ScreenSkills and the Creative Industries Federation and was originally funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. Its 2020/21 funding comes from Arts Council England.